New Cardinals offensive coordinator Mike McCoy speaks to the media during his introductory press conference Monday.
There were no specific answers about the offense coming from new Cardinals offensive coordinator Mike McCoy Monday, although that’s not a surprise with a complete unknown at the quarterback position right now.
If there is one thing McCoy and head coach Steve Wilks made clear, however, it was that the Cards’ look on offense needed to be flexible – and that McCoy’s history showed he can be that.
It’s about the players, the 45-year-old McCoy said, and the offseason – and training camp – is to “find out what our players do best and adjust accordingly.”
“Everyone on paper says ‘You want to have balance,’ ” McCoy added. “Well, we want to win.”
The Cardinals have questions about how their offensive line will look, who the tight ends might be, and what the wide receiver
corps will feature. And, of course, the QB.
McCoy’s career has seen a transition from Rodney Peete to Jake Delhomme (allowing the latter to reach a Super Bowl) to working through four different quarterbacks in a season one year at Carolina to navigating a Broncos’ tenure from Kyle Orton to Tim Tebow to Peyton Manning before working with Philip Rivers in San Diego. He shouldn’t be unprepared with whomever the Cardinals might try at quarterback.
“It’s important you have a coach that understands the vast range of players he might have to coach,” Wilks said.
That was apparent when McCoy was asked what kind of quarterback he’d prefer if he were given a choice at his perfect possibility: “One that’s going to win a lot of games.”
The Cardinals and Wilks are still putting together their coaching staff, with interviews ongoing. Wilks said he was still on target to complete his staff by the Super Bowl on Sunday.
Adding McCoy – who interviewed for the Cardinals’ head coaching vacancy in 2013 that went to Bruce Arians, and said he had kept “in close contact” with team president Michael Bidwill and GM Steve Keim since then – provides not only an experienced offensive mind but also one with head coaching experience, which helps a first-time NFL head coach like Wilks. McCoy coached the Chargers from 2013-2016. He was the Broncos' offensive coordinator last season, although he was let go after 10 games.
McCoy acknowledged his mindset as an offensive coordinator changed after his stint as a head coach, understanding what goes into the thought process as the boss.
“I have a better perspective for him when it’s that third-down call, when it’s ‘Do you run it or do you throw it’, and what might
happen if it doesn’t work,” McCoy said. “Because they are all touchdowns and first downs on paper.”
Wilks said he believes in letting his coaches do the job they were hired to do, but the former defensive coordinator added he would still be “heavily involved” in all aspects of planning during the week, and that includes offense. Both mentioned multiple times the clear communication that must be present.
McCoy said he’s only had the chance to talk to one player thus far – wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, in a conversation McCoy said was “just hello, how are you?” Fitzgerald still has not yet said if he was playing in 2018 for sure, although McCoy a couple of times referenced Fitzgerald in terms of the upcoming season sounding like a coach expecting Fitzgerald to return.
“He’s excited,” McCoy said.
Running back David Johnson -- obviously – will be a crucial component, with McCoy noting he will continue to catch passes as well as run the ball.
Whoever is on the offense, McCoy said, will even have the chance to make suggestions this offseason as the Cardinals put together the system they will use under the new regime.
“I don’t have all the answers,” McCoy said. “We’ll change some terminology.
“Some things will carry over. … As players get here, if they have some suggestions, I’ll be open. But I have the final say. That’s my job.”
Images of CB Patrick Peterson, S Budda Baker and LB Chandler Jones during the Pro Bowl